Dual Loyalty

As writers and bloggers are so fond of saying; you couldn't make it up. You don't cross the Iron Curtain and come out without scars ...
· Jozef Imrich, Survivor of the Iron Curtain Crossing

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Whenever you get the urge to go out and buy, or buy, or buy — head to the Iceberg, the local cafe or bar, get yourself a strong coffee, bluetongue beer or glass of wine (invest the extra buck in the good stuff!), sit long and hard and keenly, swim far into the mind’s labyrinths, then put pen to Moleskin and make this world worth moving in! The brain does weird things, hence: poetry… No one seems to realize that the destruction of poetry as a tradition would not destroy poetry itself …

In the meantime plunge into The coldest and best online journals

Uncertainty is more beautiful still Ability to capture the subtlest shades of the financial palette
From Higher Aims to Hired Hands:The Social Transformation of American Business Schools and the Unfulfilled Promise of Management as a Profession.
People with MBAs are not necessarily great business people writes Greg Leader Cramer Business schools stand accused of churning out identikit management footsoldiers equipped with the latest buzz

Something happened to management culture decades ago and now being a Master of Business Administration, especially from Harvard, is rather on the nose. MBA, it's being said, can also stand for 'Mediocre but Arrogant', or 'Management by Accident'

• MBA: Mostly bloody awful My Life Would Have Been Different if I did not come across managers with MBA ; [Ten ways to respond to the stock market collapse - Realize any investment is always a risk. Waiting for Godot: I'm still as mean, arrogant, silly, paranoid and scared as ever; 10 Best Ways to Bring in Blog Traffic The President is more than the present moment ]
• · Leather and lace: inside the secret world of the bikie chick The man police allege may be fuelling Sydney's bikie war and is a force behind its newest gang, Notorious, has warned Sydney to prepare for more bloodshed. Strike Force Raptor: This will end in another Milperra – it all started at Winston Hills Hotel a day before the fathers day ; Google: SYDNEY'S bikie war exploded again last night as a man was ambushed in an underground carpark. He was sprayed with bullets as he stood in the car park on Punchbowl Rd, Lakemba, at about 11.35pm on Saturday night 29 March 09 What is alive in the bikie body clock is also ticking; Ross Coulthart is co-author of Dead Man Running Bikie wars fuelled by drug and crime ; Here is a sign of the times. Line up the names of the Bandidos and Coman- chero shot at Milperra's Viking Tavern on Father's Day 1984, and those of their bosses. Tony McCoy, Gregory Campbell, Jock Ross, Anthony Spencer, Mario Cianter, Leroy Jeschke, Ivan Romchek, Robert Lane, Michael O'Keefe. Secret men's business – no more
• · Who is to blame for the world economic crisis? Does market capitalism have a future? Big questions – in Paris in 1938... Beacon of Liberty Amid Depression; Banjo's journey from bad guy to mentor is pure poetry Like wind loves a window
• · · Rainbow of cinematic poetic content. Like poetry, film tells a story by compressing time, and through an emotive, image-based structure. There is a syntax of images, a rhythm. And it works with light—a material light. Film language is unavoidable—it’s part of our unconscious, our desires, memories, etc., and is very captivating and powerful. Movies With Poetry: A voice comes to one in the dark. Imagine …; You will not have roses thrown at your feet. You will not make money. You will not become the celebrated guest poet at universities & bookstores coast-to-coast. You will not be invited to read your poetry all over the world. You will not have multiple book release parties. … You simply will not. Poetry Is To Money As Ice Cream Is To Mud
• · · · If this is accurate, heads are going to roll: ROGUE Defence spies have been accused of hacking into Defence Minister Joel Fitzgibbon's personal laptop computer to steal bank details - to track his financial connections to a wealthy Chinese businesswoman Politicians can be compromised by travel gifts: security expert; THE acting Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, says the political and media focus on links between politicians and Chinese interests is bordering on the absurd. A confidant of Mr Howard, former NSW premier Bob Carr and Mr Rudd Google: Touch of Yellow Peril deja vu; Reveal their secrets … Protect our own Helen Liu 'spy' storm widens; In the dying days of the woeful George Bush administration, former NSW premier Bob Carr wrote to the White House asking for a presidential pardon to be granted to the convicted corporate fraudster Conrad Black. Bob Carr bats for his mate Conrad Black
• · · · · It was a vintage performance as former Victorian premier Jeff Kennett - hardly pausing to catch his breath between the barbs . (Former NSW premier) Bob (Carr) was very good, a lovely man; read a lot; got on well with the fourth estate - in short, did nothing. Red China aka NSW a hopeless failure; Rudd is yet another victim of the "got to be loved" syndrome in public life. I first saw it when I worked for Bob Carr - how the lure of public adulation can transform a serious intellectual into someone obsessed with media management and opinion polls. Both (Carr and Rudd) came from the school of hard rocks, teased and humiliated by their adolescent peers. Both sought comfort in the solidarity of the Labor movement. No one should underestimate the emotional side of politics; It is believed that Ms Liu is well connected within Australian Labor Party (NSW) circles close to former NSW premier Bob Carr Diamond Hill International ; ALP sources said yesterday Ms Liu was well known in NSW Labor circles and was reportedly close to former NSW premier Bob Carr and his wife Helena. Cold War Bomb is ticking
• · · · · · Ethics -- NSW-style. Ethics of NSW MPs -- annual reports a joke ; Pat Sergi, Tony Labbozzetta, Nick Scali and Francesco Madafferi … Talk about the pot calling the kettle black ; New life for Orange Grove

Friday, March 13, 2009

Seeing double: thirty years ago I used to celebrate my confirmation as well as my name day as Patrick and Jozef tended to bring lotd of cheers to the European Spring … So it was appropriate to invade Hunters Hill and share a beer with Kevin before Pauline Gardner and Lynden Jones reminded us of the German accents in the Deathtrap

Use online portals to explore your interests and share comments with like-minded users. Ten years ago circa 1999, if you liked a political story you read in the paper you might mention it to a friend over coffee . These days, if you read that story online you could link it to bookmarking and sharing sites that are read by millions of people, allowing them to comment on the story and vote on how important they think it is. Double Media Dragon

Champions of reform? ASIO at its peak, says departing chief
ASIO is riding high and in the best shape in its 60-year history, according to its outgoing chief Paul O'Sullivan.

Mr O'Sullivan, who relinquished the top job at the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation last weekend to take up a senior diplomatic post, said the big investment in the organisation since 2001 had put ASIO on the "front foot" for the first time in a long while. The most compelling argument for this investment continues to be the prevention of a terrorist attack in Australia.

My Life Would Have Been Different if I did not cross the Iron Curtain, worked at NSW Parliament ;-); [The Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) ; AUSTRALIA'S domestic spy agency, ASIO, was dysfunctional throughout much of the Cold War and was probably infiltrated by hostile foreign agents, according to previously top-secret documents from the 1970s. ASIO: the enemy was within ]
• · Most of the real politicians parodied in the Twitter parliament, which has more than 15 fakes - including three bogus Kevin Rudds - have no plans to erase them, crediting satire as being a healthy part of democracy O'Farrell; Burrying the mistakes … One in three of Media Dragon lovers ends up dead
• · Disgraced former judge Marcus Einfeld is being investigated over another traffic offence, this time for not wearing a seatbelt while travelling to court. ; Australian judge Marcus Einfeld was sentenced to two years in prison for lying about a 77 Australian dollar ($54) speeding ticket, while in Indonesia, a lawmaker was sentenced to just six years in jail for accepting a Rp 3.4 billion ($296,000) bribe during a tender process. Two sentences in two countries for different crimes. But crimes nonetheless! 77: When the Penalty Doesn’t Fit the Crime; Google: It was the electronic trail left by Marcus Einfeld the day he was caught speeding that helped detectives unravel his web of deceit and ultimately stained his reputation Prominent Australian jurist Marcus Einfeld Twice married with four children, he is also said to be an accomplished pianist who enjoys theatre and the arts. Google on Marcus Einfeld
• · · Fairness is not an abstract concept. It is essentially practical. Whether one talks in terms of procedural fairness or natural justice, the concern of the law is to avoid practical injustice. Parker v Comptroller-General of Customs; Gary Banks, Productivity Commission Evidence-based policy-making: what is it? how do we get it?; Joan Goodchild: Companies need to run a general social engineering awareness campaign. They need to tell employees what to look for and how to look for it; and teach employees that it's not that the company doesn't trust the people within the organisation, it's that there are people out there trying to hack into systems every day. Social engineering: anatomy of a hack ; Many executives will find themselves trapped in a labyrinth from which there appears no hope of escape. Whether they emerge as heroes or scapegoats is up to them. The road to success is built on ideas
• · · · I hope this movie will finally show people the ferocious face of WORLD, which is the face that really runs things Italy and the world; With the financial world on its head, few would have predicted a year ago that Australia's big four banks would be ranked in the world's top 20 by market Wall St villains now saviours
• · · · · 2009: Big Brother may have been axed from TV, but government bureaucrats are doing their best to keep George Orwell s dystopian nightmare alive. In only the first year government could pry into telecommunication companies customer details under phone bugging laws, 183,099 authorisations were given to 27 federal and state government agencies as part of criminal and civil investigations. 2008: Bug or track people for up to four days without a warrant ; Competitive advantage in today's market is more or less a dream if it is not closely tied to knowledge management. Includes discussion of social network analysis. Knowledge management: it's all about people,
• · · · · · The idea of lengthy, considered and purely rational decision making is not only unattainable but unworkable. You've got to keep the emotion in Better faster decisions ; Career advice: how to prepare if you score an interview ; The world of business has changed and management hasn't kept up. Management 1.0 must move to management 2.0. Inventing management's future: identifying the challenges ; In this report, we explore the successes of analytics in governmental agencies and attempt to develop an assessment framework for those that are yet to embark on the analytics journey or are still in the early stages of it. We focus in particular on four governmental areas: health care, logistics, revenue management, and briefly (because of the paucity of public sources) intelligence... The four sections identify governmental organizations that are exploiting analytics to meet their strategic goals. After the description of these activities and, in some cases, their impact, we discuss key factors that the agencies have faced in implementing analytics. We discuss each agency in terms of the key components necessary for leveraging analytics in our assessment framework The strategic use of analytics in government

Sunday, March 01, 2009

New chapter in Cold River as it flows past Coast of Fires ...

Like Media Dragon, Kevin loves the dramas at work and the movies, although one only needs to go into a DVD store to see that for every great film out there, there are hundreds, maybe thousands, that aren't so good. He has some sympathy for a business that has to live off creative ideas, but his advice to the movie industry would be to get closer to the audience… Movie Magic For serial entrepreneurs, there are no failures, only learning experiences.It's the thrill of a good idea and managing opportunities that count - the wealth will take care of itself. Our greatest storytellers are also the ones with the greatest empathy In a deep stroke of good timing

Excited about ideas like Dr Cope or Patricia Azarias Most of all, they are willing to collaborate
The really good scholars are self-confident, and that confidence allows them to treat everyone else with respect and kindness. They are excited about ideas, and they are willing to share. Most of all, they are willing to collaborate — they are the ones organizing symposia, inviting guest speakers, cultivating graduate students, and just generally creating the kind of atmosphere where good work flourishes and everyone benefits.

It’s amazing to me how many times I’ve seen people — “established” scholars and younger students alike — give absolutely terrible papers, and then walk around snubbing everyone around them. Insecurity leads to intellectual isolation; people become greedy, self-centered, and unwilling to share. When they do present things, they are often incoherent because they don’t care a whit about sharing their thoughts with the community; indeed sometimes it seems like they try to intentionally make their arguments confusing in order to make themselves seem smarter. It backfires — they end up sounding pompous and priggish, but they don’t end up sparking fresh ideas or adding anything new to the discourse.

Backfires; [Michael Lewis, of Moneyball fame, has now added one more story to MoneyLaw's repertoire of narratives highlighting the value of good teamwork … the single factor that makes a great team player is the mirror image of the single factor that turns even the most productive scholar into a toxic Arschloch: selfishness. Battier has almost none of that trait, and his teamwork makes him the greatest basketball player that no casual fan can name. Rocket man ; The only two things in life that are certain are Death and Taxes, so the popular lamentation goes. As all taxpaying Americans know, the government utilizes its powers under the Sixteenth Amendment to collect its citizens' money and utilize it, ideally, for public good ]
• · The transformation of the media world is well underway, facilitated by the spread of digital tools. A myriad of innovative new media organizations have sprung up to take advantage of the opportunities that stem from low-cost distribution networks Papers Explore News and Information as Digital Media Come of Age ; The New Media Index is a weekly report that captures the leading commentary of blogs and social media sites focused on news and compares those subjects to that of the mainstream press. The Project also tracks the most popular news video on YouTube each week. Pew's Project for Excellence in Journalism Launches New Media Index
• · Adapting some of the technology pioneered by Google News, we're now showing categories on the left side of the website and organizing the blog posts within those categories into clusters, which are groupings of posts about the same story or event Official Google Blog ; Every blog has its day: Politically-interested Internet users' perceptions of blog credibility. Examininatin of U.S. politically-interested Internet users' perceptions of the credibility of blogs. The study found that blogs were judged as moderately credible, but as more credible than any mainstream media or online source. Both reliance and motivations predicted blog credibility after controlling for demographics and political variables. Reliance proved a consistently stronger predictor than blog motivations. Also, information-seeking motives predicted credibility better than entertainment ones. Politically-interested Internet Users' Perceptions of Blog Credibility
• · · Another New Obama Administration Website: Recovery.gov Goes Live Recovery.gov is a website that lets you, the taxpayer, figure out where the money from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act is going Recovery.gov ; What you should not do if you are a Vice Dean of Research earning a $269,280 salary with an $115,000 administrative stipend: steal a student's bike in full view of a security camera Candid Camera
• · · · Although, key people at HBOS did do wrong, I am also sure that their intentions were usually good and, in a sense, they were also caught up themselves in what the Greek tragedies would call the “ineluctability of fate”. To mix a few well known similes / metaphors / stories, the current financial crisis is a bit like the story of the Emperor’s new clothes. Anyone whose eyes were not blinded by money, power and pride (Hubris) who really looked carefully knew there was something wrong and that economic growth based almost solely on excessive consumer spending based on excessive consumer credit based on massively increasing property prices which were caused by the very same excessively easy credit could only ultimately lead to disaster. But sadly, no-one wanted or felt able to speak up for fear of stepping out of line with the rest of the lemmings who were busy organising themselves to run over the edge of the cliff behind the pied piper CEOs and executive teams that were being paid so much to play that tune and take them in that direction. I am still toxic waste now for having spoken out all those years ago! I would be amazed if there were not many executives who, if they really examined their consciences closely, would not say that they knew this too. HBOS whistleblower: statement of evidence; Secrecy in Britain about corporate tax and failure to enforce the law have allowed tax avoidance to flourish, the Guardian's tax gap investigation has found. The government has failed to enforce disclosure rules in the Companies Act under which details of all offshore subsidiaries, which can be used for tax avoidance, must be publicly registered. A climate of private and state secrecy
• · · · · Senators Carl Levin and Charles Grassley introduced on Jan. 29 the “Hedge Fund Transparency Act,” and voting against that would be akin to attacking Mom and apple pie. We have come to learn that hedge funds are hardly immune to the market’s travails, and the immunity the managers of these vehicles enjoyed is likely to end with greater regulatory control and disclosure of trading strategies. Mr. Madoff showed that the black-box investment strategy is a chimera. His scam worked for as long as it did because he kept his investment program away from outside scrutiny, using a little-known accounting firm and not using an independent custodian to hold the securities. If the proposed legislation sheds a bit more light on the hedge fund world, then it may be worthwhile. Greater regulation is no panacea, but breaking down the idea that great wealth and a rising economy somehow makes one a “sophisticated investor” would be a positive development. Public disclosure can have a great leveling effect by showing that investment managers are not necessarily all that sophisticated. And rather than making investments more complex, perhaps a return to an earlier time that valued protecting clients and managing their investments for the long term might be worth considering. The next time you read that a financial advisor or hedge fund manager is a “sophisticated investor,” make sure to take it with a grain of salt. ; It is nonsense to defend tax avoidance by arguing that rewards are reaped by tomorrow's pensioners …. There is nothing new about tax avoidance. Most Georgian houses have blind windows, bricked up to avoid window taxes. And almost a millennium ago, in what could be seen as a blatant but dramatic tax avoidance device, Lady Godiva rode naked through Coventry to shelter its citizens from the Heregeld.
When Lady Godiva rode through Coventry, people closed their windows and stayed indoors. But the time for turning a blind eye to avoidance has long gone: we now need greater tax transparency Backdoor fictions
• · · · · · At the last count, since rules requiring the disclosure of tax avoidance arrangements to HMRC were introduced in 2004 there had been around 14,000 such schemes. Or so we thought. Now it seems these might be far from the limit of the problem, as many "promoters" of schemes, such as accountants, lawyers and specialist "boutique" tax avoidance firms, are refusing to play the game. A parliamentary answer obtained by Austin Mitchell MP, who has also tabled an early-day motion urging action on tax avoidance, reveals that no fewer than 90 promoters are under investigation for failing to disclose schemes. Presumably they were either hoping they wouldn't be picked up or think they have found a loophole in the rules. Presumably they were either hoping they wouldn't be picked up or think they have found a loophole in the rules. ; Dozens of senior civil servants accepted lavish corporate hospitality including trips to Wimbledon and the Chelsea Flower Show and invitations to watch England, Chelsea and Manchester United play. Sir Brian Bender is a top Whitehall mandarin. So what was he doing at Wimbledon, the Derby and the Chelsea Flower Show?; Humor of rules TRIGUBOFF'S SPARE HOUSE IS PART OF HIS HOME, JUDGE RULES